Birding in Taiwan



Birds in Taiwan

Endemic Species

Collared Bush-Robin


Formosan Magpie

Formosan Whistling-Thrush

Mikado Pheasant

Steere's Liocichla

Styan's Bulbul

Swinhoe's Pheasant

Taiwan Barwing

Taiwan Bush-Warbler

Taiwan Partridge

Taiwan Yuhina

White-eared Sibia

White-whiskered Laughingthrush

Yellow Tit


Endemic Sub-Species

Alpine Accentor

Black-browed Barbet

Black-naped Monarch

Black Bulbul

Black Drongo

Bronzed Drongo

Collared Finchbill

Crested Goshawk

Crested Serpent-Eagle


Lanyu’ Scops-Owl

Oriental Skylark

Streak-breasted Scimitar-Babbler

Vinaceous Rosefinch


More Birds in Taiwan

Black-faced Spoonbill

Black-naped Oriole

Black-throated Tit

Black-winged Stilt

Chinese Crested Tern

Common Kingfisher

Common Moorhen

Daurian Redstart

Fairy Pitta

Gray-chinned Minivet

Gray Heron

Japanese White-eye

Malayan Night-heron


Common Moorhen

Gallinula chloropus

The Common Moorhen is approximately 33 cm in length, heavy-bodied and slaty-black all over except for two white patches under the tail and a line of white streaks along the side.  The tip of the bill is yellow, while the base is red, including a frontal shield which covers most of the forehead.  The legs and feet are greenish yellow.  The sexes are similar in appearance.  Common Moorhens inhabit a variety of natural and man-made freshwater habitats, including lakes, ponds, marshes, ditches and rice paddies, provided a sufficient cover of aquatic plants is present.  They spend most of their time swimming rather than walking, compared to other members of the rail family, to which they belong.

  Common Moorhens are quite noisy, making frequent harsh clucking, chattering and croaking calls.   They are omnivorous, eating a variety of aquatic plants as well as small animals such as tadpoles, earthworms, crustaceans, molluscs and insects.  Common Moorhens build a saucer-shaped nest of twigs, reeds, rushes and sedges which is usually slightly above the water level, but may be floating or sometimes in a low bush.  The number of eggs varies widely, but is usually 3 to 9.  Both parents help build the nest and share in incubation and feeding of the young.  The young leave the nest within two to three days of hatching and are able to swim well by the third day.  The Common Moorhen is resident in Taiwan throughout the year, and is readily seen in wetlands.


References:  Handbook of Birds of the World Vol. 3; The Complete Guide to Birds in Taiwan (Jin-yuan Wang)